Changing Seasons : September 2018

September has been an adventurous month when I disappeared into the isolated outback city of Broken Hill. I returned 3 days ago and I am still processing my thoughts and impressions and sorting the hundreds of photos. So more on that in another post.

The garden was left to look after itself for the 2 weeks we were away, a friend popped in a couple of times to water the pots (yes the pots seem to be proliferating, despite my resolve to minimise them…). I had planted quite a lot of annual seedlings and some new native shrubs that were all at the vulnerable stage of still establishing themselves.

Before we left it had been very dry, no rain for weeks, and I had been watering regularly and wondering how the garden would survive without my tender loving care. I covered all the beds with sugar cane mulch. Then the week before we left the heavens opened and over the 7 days we had 80mm of life giving rain. I heaved a huge sigh of relief, and I’m sure the plants did too.

It did not rain while we were away, but the day we returned a huge storm swept in from the west. Wind, rain, thunder, even hail. But our area only received the tail end of 20mm of rain, no hail. Areas further west were devastated. Everything in the garden was thriving. It was still raining today, but between the showers the sun peeped out, briefly, and I went out to take some photos. september garden 026_4000x3000After the rain everything looks so lush. Notice on the right hand side there are tiny blobs of red hiding among the leaves of the powder puff Lilly Pilly (Syzygium Wilsonii)

Some are already opened and next month the tree will be covered in a spectacular cascade of fluffy blood red balls. Surrounding the base of this native wonder tree are the annuals I planted a few weeks ago. I was so pleased to see they had survived my absence and greeted me with the start of their flowering season. The Red Dianthus, true to its name “Red Rocket” has rocketed off ahead of the Statice “Rat’s Tail” waving to me in the background and the blue and white Salvia just making an appearance in front. september garden 014_4000x3000What pleased me most was the native Ozothamnus tucked behind the annuals in full flower. This will eventually grow to 2 metres and fill this area. september garden 017_4000x3000

Along the drive the Alyssum is still flowering profusely and the geraniums are getting tall but seem to be all leaves at the moment. Maybe as it gets warmer they will burst into flower. I can see a few weeds need attention…september garden 024_4000x3000Across the other side of the drive the matchstick bromeliads are making a brave show.september garden 023_4000x3000Do you remember the paper daisies I grew from seed? (Check here). Well amazingly they are still growing. They are now about 7 feet tall, despite me trimming them back a few weeks ago.

I had to use the zoom to get the right hand photo!!! The nasturtiums will be using them as climbing poles insinuating themselves up and through all the plants in their path. I will have to trim them back… september garden 003_4000x3000In the back garden they are also taking over during the 2 weeks I have been away, using Jacks Dragon Fruit frame to reach for the sun,  they are self sown, feral, and great survivors, but I love their happy sunny, orange faces smiling out at me, and they add zing to a salad.

Over in the only slightly shady section of the garden the primulas are putting on a picturesque show and look at those lettuce waiting to be picked.

But these are the star performers. The glorious New South Wales rock orchid (Dendrobium speciosum)september garden 008_4000x30002 weeks ago when I left home they were just a tiny rather insignificant bud, but look at them now. september garden 006_4000x3000So despite being on its own most of the month (or maybe because it was on its own) the garden has thrived.


Su Leslie of “Zimmerbitch” is hosting a monthly challenge “changing seasons” were she invites you to share the changing seasons in your part of the world, or something that means September. Pop over to see the rules of this monthly challenge.


  1. That Dendrobium is magnificent and it seems that the rest of the garden has managed quite well without you. Though those nasturtiums have obviously taken advantage. I have them growing all over my herb beds, but they are far too cheerful to start pulling out just yet. Hope you had a fab time in BH and I look forward to the posts when you have the time.

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  2. The garden is looking spectacular despite your absence, Pauline. The powder puff Lilly Pilly is new to me and the Ozomanthus is going so well. How lucky were you with the rain! I’m looking forward to reading about your visit to BH.

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  3. Lush is definitely the word! I’m so glad your garden survived (and thrived in) those weeks you were away. Now I’m looking forward to your holiday posts and photos. No pressure, hehe. 🙂

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  4. Hello! I was getting to thinking that I somehow stopped following your blog. I remember when you left, but it seemed like you had been gone a long time. You garden looks so . . . distinct. There are familiar elements in it, but the unfamiliar parts make it seem so distinct. It is not easy to explain, like trying to identify the differences between ranch architecture and Queenslander architecture without known that Queenslander is a completely different architectural style. (Then when one reads a bit about Queenslander architecture, the many differences – some of which are quite extreme – are very obvious.)

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    • Seems ages to me too Tony, about 3 weeks. Your comment is very interesting. The garden is in transition at the moment. It was tropical with palms, ferns lots of shade. But since the palms came down I’m changing it to more native and as the native plants are still small I’ve filled the gaps with annuals. Hoping the native shrubs will fill out and take over eventually. Gardening is an ever evolving interest.

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  5. grrrr. i wrote a comment while offline, and now it’s not on the screen while online!
    the gardens are a visual comfort and most likely a balm to the soul for anyone who steps inside to view in person. the nasturtiums grow wild in the andes, and they have always been one of my favorite flowers.. so colorful and happy. in fact there’s a small study in progress now – it’s time to return to it and finish it pronto!

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    • I’ve never seen them this tall before, they were grown from seed. I’ve just put some more seedlings in from the plant nursery so will see how tall they grow, the label says they will be 50cm.

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